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18

Sep, 2017

FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING RULES EXPLAINED By Phil Henning and The Predicament Wrestling Score Book

FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING RULES EXPLAINED
By Phil Henning and The Predicament Wrestling Score Book
How would you explain folkstyle wrestling rules to potential fans, parents, beginning
wrestlers, or the media so they would easily understand? I believe all of us know many
people who have become serious wrestling fans after they learned about our sport.
That old adage “The More You Know, The More You Will Enjoy!” certainly applies here.
If our sport is to continue to grow in popularity nationwide, we must do a better job of
explaining it. This article is written from a referee’s point of view and will help people
understand faster. The following definitions are compiled from many coaches and
referees in our sport, and they are rule and rule interpretation correct.
Please feel free to copy and paste any part of this article into your wrestling meet and
tournament programs to help explain to fans what is happening. You might consider
making a stack of four page packets stapled front to back available at home wrestling
meets on a table next to your home wrestling programs. Make copies and give them to
your fans, parents, youth and high school wrestlers, stat managers, cheerleaders, table
workers, youth tournament referees, and your local media to better explain our sport.
This article will fit on four pages if you do not use this first part. Many coaches don’t
teach these rules and interpretations to their wrestlers like they should. How many of
you coaches take the time to cover one rule interpretation in each practice? This article
will hopefully make it all easier.
FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING - A combative sport where one wrestler tries to physically
control the opponent against their will without injuring them.
PHYSICAL CONTROL - To get behind the opponent’s back and arms, force them down
to the mat, turn them over onto their back, and pin them. To take the opponent directly
from their feet to their back without getting behind them, and pin them. To counter the
opponent’s moves to stay in the control position.
MATCH OR BOUT - When two wrestlers wrestle each other. Both wrestlers must
weigh within one weight class of each other. You win a match by pinning your
opponent, by scoring more match points than your opponent, or by disqualification if
your opponent breaks certain rules.
A MATCH in high school consists of three two-minute periods. The first period begins
in neutral position with both wrestlers on their feet and facing each other. The second
period begins with one wrestler choosing top, bottom, neutral, or deferring choice until
the third period. The third period begins with the other wrestler choosing top, bottom, or
neutral position.
POSITIONS - Most sports have two scoring positions - offense and defense.
1. Wrestling has three scoring positions - offense, defense, and neutral.
2. You can only be in one of these positions at a time.
3. You can only score in certain ways from each position.
4. Scoring match points is just improving from defense to neutral to offense to
a pinning position, in that order.
5. When one wrestler is in the neutral position, the opponent must also be in
the neutral position.
6. When one wrestler is in the offensive position, the opponent must be in the
defensive position.
OFFENSIVE POSITION - ON TOP - IN CONTROL - THE BEST POSITION - The
wrestler who is on top of and/or behind the opponent and is physically controlling them.
Also, the wrestler on top in the referee’s starting position. The offensive wrestler will try
to physically break down the opponent and turn the opponent’s back toward the mat (45
degree angle or less) to score near fall points or to gain a fall. Only the offensive
wrestler can score a 2, 3, or 4 point near fall.
NEUTRAL POSITION - ON THE FEET - NO CONTROL - THE NEXT BEST POSITION
- When neither wrestler has control over the other and they are both on their feet or
knees and facing each other. Each neutral wrestler will try to "break balance" on the
other and take them down to the mat. Only the neutral wrestler can score a 2 point
takedown.
DEFENSIVE POSITION - ON THE BOTTOM - BEING CONTROLLED - THE WORST
POSITION – The wrestler who is underneath and is being physically controlled. Also
the wrestler on the bottom in the referee’s starting position. The defensive wrestler will
try to get out of the top wrestler’s control by escaping from or reversing the
offensive wrestler. Only the defensive wrestler can score a 1 point escape or a 2 point
reversal. Strategy-wise, most wrestlers will choose "down" when it's their choice of
position because they feel it is easier to score an escape or reversal from this "worst
position", than a takedown from neutral or a near fall from on top.
MATCH STOPPED - If the wrestlers have their match stopped by the referee’s whistle,
the referee will return them to the center of the mat and start them wrestling again in the
same neutral, top, or bottom position that they were in when the match was stopped.
For example: out-of-bounds, stalemate, potentially dangerous, penalty, injury, coach's
conference, or no action on the edge of the mat.
STALEMATE - The referee can stop the match when both wrestlers are in a situation
where neither wrestler can improve their position.
POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS - The referee can stop the match in situations where
one wrestler might become injured by a legal or illegal hold before the injury occurs.
Safety is considered more important than scoring and the match can continue.
REFEREE'S POSITION - A starting position in the center of the mat where the
defensive wrestler puts their knees down on one side of one parallel line and hands
down on the other side of the other parallel line. Once set, they must remain still until
the referee blows the start whistle, or they can be cautioned for moving too soon.
- After the defensive wrestler acknowledges to the referee that they are set, the
referee will signal the offensive wrestler to assume their choice of either the traditional
top starting position or the freestyle top starting position.
- In the traditional top starting position, the offensive wrestler will place at least
one knee down on the mat on the same side as they are going to touch the elbow, place
one hand naval deep around the waist, place their head over the center line of the
defensive wrestler's back, and LASTLY, touch the back of one elbow with the palm of
the other hand, and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.
- In the freestyle top starting position, the offensive wrestler will signal to the
referee by raising both hands toward the referee with the thumbs touching and then the
referee will verbally notify the bottom wrestler that the top wrestler is going to use a
freestyle start. The offensive wrestler will stay standing to the side or the back of the
defensive wrestler and place both hands with thumbs still touching on the midline of the
back of the defensive wrestler and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.
- To insure a fair start, either the top or bottom wrestler can be cautioned for
each time they assume an incorrect starting position OR they move too soon before the
referee blows the start whistle.
- The above details are very technical, but when followed correctly, referee's
position starts go very smoothly and quickly.
MATCH POINTS – Points scored during a match. There are eight basic ways to score
match points in high school.
1. TAKEDOWN - T2 - 2 points - Awarded after one of the neutral wrestlers gets behind
the opponent and forces them down to the mat to their stomach or side or knees or
weight on all fours OR takes them directly to their back or buttocks without getting
behind them AND becomes the offensive wrestler. Neutral to Offense is a twopoint
takedown. If you go from neutral to defense, you were taken down.
2. ESCAPE - E1 - 1 point – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from
underneath the opponent’s control and gets into the neutral position AND is facing the
opponent. Defense to Neutral is a one point escape.
3. REVERSAL - R2 - 2 points – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from
underneath the opponent’s control and gets on top of and/or behind the opponent in one
move AND becomes the offensive wrestler. To earn a reversal, you do not have to
return your opponent to the mat as you would on a takedown. Defense to Offense is a
two point reversal.
4. NEAR FALL 2 - N2 - 2 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler turns the
defensive wrestler over onto their back and holds them at a 45 degree angle or less for
between 2-4 seconds (2-4 counts by the referee). Also awarded when the match is
stopped due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the
match (unethical unless they are really injured) while being turned toward their back
(imminent near fall) before the near fall count starts or before 2 counts by the referee.
Only one set of near fall points can be awarded for each pinning hold, and they cannot
be awarded until after the pinning situation has ended. Defense on their Back.
5 NEAR FALL 3 - N3 - 3 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler holds the
defensive wrestler within near fall criteria for five or more seconds in a row (5 counts by
the referee), instead of the two point near fall. Also awarded when the match is stopped
due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match
(unethical unless they are really injured) after being held within two point near fall
criteria (2-4 count by the referee), instead of the 2 point near fall. Defense on their Back
Longer.
6. NEAR FALL 4 - N4 - 4 points – Awarded when the match is stopped due to the
defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match (unethical
unless they are really injured) after being held within near fall criteria for five or more
seconds, instead of the 3 point near fall. Defense on their Back Longer and Injured.
7. PENALTY POINTS - P1 or P2 - 1 or 2 points - A wrestler in any of the three scoring
positions can earn one or two penalty points when their opponent breaks the rules of
wrestling. These rules include no stalling (one stall warning “S” is given before
penalizing for stalling), no swearing, kicking, scratching, biting, hitting, body slamming
an opponent to the mat, bending any body part beyond its normal range of motion (the
referee will try to stop these situations as “potentially dangerous” before someone is
injured), or using holds from the illegal holds’ list. On the penalty chart, any first penalty
is 1 point. Any second penalty is 1 point. Any third penalty is 2 points. Any fourth
penalty is disqualification. Unsportsmanlike conduct and flagrant misconduct can lead
to immediate disqualification.
7-1. LOCKED HANDS PENALTY - A wrestler in the neutral position or defensive
position can lock hands around the torso or both legs of the opponent. But it is a
penalty for the offensive wrestler to lock hands (except cradles) around the torso or both
legs of the defensive wrestler unless the opponent is standing on their feet or within a
near fall count. Overlapping fingers is considered locked hands by the referee.
7-2. LOCKED HANDS AROUND THE HEAD PENALTY - It is a penalty from any of the
three scoring positions to lock hands around the opponent’s head without an arm or leg
included. You must also allow your opponent to breathe in a headlock or the referee
can stop it as potentially dangerous.
8. CAUTION and CAUTION POINT - C and C1 - 0 and 1 point - A wrestler in any of
the three scoring positions can earn one caution point from the opponent’s third caution
on for each time the opponent is cautioned by the referee for starting too quick before
the whistle OR by lining up incorrectly when starting from referee’s position or from on
the feet. A wrestler is allowed two cautions before the C1 penalty points begin. Also
caution points are separate from penalty points and do not count on the penalty chart
towards disqualification. Scored C, C, C1, C1, C1, etc.
TEAM POINTS - DUAL MEET SCORING
1. PIN FALL - 6 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler holds both of the
opponent’s scapulas to the mat for two consecutive seconds in high school. The match
is over as soon as the fall occurs, and the one who is pinned loses automatically even
though they may have been way ahead in match points at the time. The referee slaps
the mat when a fall occurs. You can pin or be pinned in any of the three scoring
positions.
2. TECHNICAL FALL - 5 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler has
scored 15 match points more than the opponent. The match is stopped as soon as the
15 point margin is achieved, except in a pinning situation where the referee will allow
the offensive wrestler to try to score the fall.
3. MAJOR DECISION - 4 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins by a
margin of 8-14 match points more than the opponent has scored.
4. REGULAR DECISION - 3 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins
by a margin of 1-7 match points more than the opponent has scored.
5. DRAW OR TIE - There are no more ties in wrestling as the match will be decided by
sudden victory overtime from the feet and/or by tie breakers from referee’s position.
6. DISQUALIFICATION - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by disqualification
when the opponent is disqualified from the match because of too many penalties
OR when a wrestler is illegally injured by an opponent’s illegal hold and cannot continue
wrestling. If you were injured by an opponent’s illegal hold (not a technical violation like
locking hands or grabbing the uniform, unless it was their fourth penalty chart penalty),
you will win the match by disqualification. It will not do a wrestler any good to
intentionally try to injure an opponent because they will lose.
7. INJURY DEFAULT – 6 team points – A wrestler wins a match by injury default when
the opponent is injured accidentally during the match and cannot continue wrestling.
8. FORFEIT - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by forfeit when the other team
does not have a wrestler to compete against them.
TEAM POINTS - TOURNAMENT SCORING - High School
1. ADVANCEMENT POINTS - High School - 2 or (1) team points for each win on the
championship side of the bracket and 1 or (1/2) team point for each win on the
consolation side of the bracket. You do not receive advancement points for a bye unless
you win your next match after the bye, unless your specific tournament allows it. Also,
you do not receive advancement points for winning your 1st, 3rd, 5th, or 7th place
matches.
2. EXTRA MARGIN OF VICTORY POINTS
- 1 or (1) extra team point for each major decision (8-14 match point victory margin).
- 1.5 or (1.5 with a near fall) extra team points for each technical fall (15 or more
match point victory margin).
- 2 or (2) extra team points for each fall, default, disqualification, forfeit.
3. PLACING POINTS
- 1st place = 16 team points
- 2nd place = 12 team points
- 3rd place = 9 team points
- 4th place = 7 team points
- 5th place = 5 team points
- 6th place = 3 team points
- 7th place = 2 team points
- 8th place = 1 team point
4. Advancement points and extra margin of victory points are always added into the
tournament team score after each match is completed. However, placement points are
not added in, until after a win in a round guarantees a certain placing even if the
wrestler loses all subsequent matches. For example: If you win a quarterfinal match in
any tournament and get into the semifinals, you are guaranteed at least 6th place, even
if you lost all of your later matches, and thus the 3 or (6) placement points for 6th place
would be added to your team score at that time. If you win your semifinal match and get
into the finals, you are guaranteed at least 2nd place, thus you would earn 9 or (6) more
placement team points by moving from the 3 or (6) - 6th place points to the 12 - 2nd
place points. A finals win would move you from the 12 - 2nd place points to the 16 - 1st
place points, and thus you would get 4 more placement team points added in after the
FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING RULES EXPLAINED
By Phil Henning and The Predicament Wrestling Score Book
How would you explain folkstyle wrestling rules to potential fans, parents, beginning
wrestlers, or the media so they would easily understand? I believe all of us know many
people who have become serious wrestling fans after they learned about our sport.
That old adage “The More You Know, The More You Will Enjoy!” certainly applies here.
If our sport is to continue to grow in popularity nationwide, we must do a better job of
explaining it. This article is written from a referee’s point of view and will help people
understand faster. The following definitions are compiled from many coaches and
referees in our sport, and they are rule and rule interpretation correct.
Please feel free to copy and paste any part of this article into your wrestling meet and
tournament programs to help explain to fans what is happening. You might consider
making a stack of four page packets stapled front to back available at home wrestling
meets on a table next to your home wrestling programs. Make copies and give them to
your fans, parents, youth and high school wrestlers, stat managers, cheerleaders, table
workers, youth tournament referees, and your local media to better explain our sport.
This article will fit on four pages if you do not use this first part. Many coaches don’t
teach these rules and interpretations to their wrestlers like they should. How many of
you coaches take the time to cover one rule interpretation in each practice? This article
will hopefully make it all easier.
FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING - A combative sport where one wrestler tries to physically
control the opponent against their will without injuring them.
PHYSICAL CONTROL - To get behind the opponent’s back and arms, force them down
to the mat, turn them over onto their back, and pin them. To take the opponent directly
from their feet to their back without getting behind them, and pin them. To counter the
opponent’s moves to stay in the control position.
MATCH OR BOUT - When two wrestlers wrestle each other. Both wrestlers must
weigh within one weight class of each other. You win a match by pinning your
opponent, by scoring more match points than your opponent, or by disqualification if
your opponent breaks certain rules.
A MATCH in high school consists of three two-minute periods. The first period begins
in neutral position with both wrestlers on their feet and facing each other. The second
period begins with one wrestler choosing top, bottom, neutral, or deferring choice until
the third period. The third period begins with the other wrestler choosing top, bottom, or
neutral position.
POSITIONS - Most sports have two scoring positions - offense and defense.
1. Wrestling has three scoring positions - offense, defense, and neutral.
2. You can only be in one of these positions at a time.
3. You can only score in certain ways from each position.
4. Scoring match points is just improving from defense to neutral to offense to
a pinning position, in that order.
5. When one wrestler is in the neutral position, the opponent must also be in
the neutral position.
6. When one wrestler is in the offensive position, the opponent must be in the
defensive position.
OFFENSIVE POSITION - ON TOP - IN CONTROL - THE BEST POSITION - The
wrestler who is on top of and/or behind the opponent and is physically controlling them.
Also, the wrestler on top in the referee’s starting position. The offensive wrestler will try
to physically break down the opponent and turn the opponent’s back toward the mat (45
degree angle or less) to score near fall points or to gain a fall. Only the offensive
wrestler can score a 2, 3, or 4 point near fall.
NEUTRAL POSITION - ON THE FEET - NO CONTROL - THE NEXT BEST POSITION
- When neither wrestler has control over the other and they are both on their feet or
knees and facing each other. Each neutral wrestler will try to "break balance" on the
other and take them down to the mat. Only the neutral wrestler can score a 2 point
takedown.
DEFENSIVE POSITION - ON THE BOTTOM - BEING CONTROLLED - THE WORST
POSITION – The wrestler who is underneath and is being physically controlled. Also
the wrestler on the bottom in the referee’s starting position. The defensive wrestler will
try to get out of the top wrestler’s control by escaping from or reversing the
offensive wrestler. Only the defensive wrestler can score a 1 point escape or a 2 point
reversal. Strategy-wise, most wrestlers will choose "down" when it's their choice of
position because they feel it is easier to score an escape or reversal from this "worst
position", than a takedown from neutral or a near fall from on top.
MATCH STOPPED - If the wrestlers have their match stopped by the referee’s whistle,
the referee will return them to the center of the mat and start them wrestling again in the
same neutral, top, or bottom position that they were in when the match was stopped.
For example: out-of-bounds, stalemate, potentially dangerous, penalty, injury, coach's
conference, or no action on the edge of the mat.
STALEMATE - The referee can stop the match when both wrestlers are in a situation
where neither wrestler can improve their position.
POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS - The referee can stop the match in situations where
one wrestler might become injured by a legal or illegal hold before the injury occurs.
Safety is considered more important than scoring and the match can continue.
REFEREE'S POSITION - A starting position in the center of the mat where the
defensive wrestler puts their knees down on one side of one parallel line and hands
down on the other side of the other parallel line. Once set, they must remain still until
the referee blows the start whistle, or they can be cautioned for moving too soon.
- After the defensive wrestler acknowledges to the referee that they are set, the
referee will signal the offensive wrestler to assume their choice of either the traditional
top starting position or the freestyle top starting position.
- In the traditional top starting position, the offensive wrestler will place at least
one knee down on the mat on the same side as they are going to touch the elbow, place
one hand naval deep around the waist, place their head over the center line of the
defensive wrestler's back, and LASTLY, touch the back of one elbow with the palm of
the other hand, and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.
- In the freestyle top starting position, the offensive wrestler will signal to the
referee by raising both hands toward the referee with the thumbs touching and then the
referee will verbally notify the bottom wrestler that the top wrestler is going to use a
freestyle start. The offensive wrestler will stay standing to the side or the back of the
defensive wrestler and place both hands with thumbs still touching on the midline of the
back of the defensive wrestler and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.
- To insure a fair start, either the top or bottom wrestler can be cautioned for
each time they assume an incorrect starting position OR they move too soon before the
referee blows the start whistle.
- The above details are very technical, but when followed correctly, referee's
position starts go very smoothly and quickly.
MATCH POINTS – Points scored during a match. There are eight basic ways to score
match points in high school.
1. TAKEDOWN - T2 - 2 points - Awarded after one of the neutral wrestlers gets behind
the opponent and forces them down to the mat to their stomach or side or knees or
weight on all fours OR takes them directly to their back or buttocks without getting
behind them AND becomes the offensive wrestler. Neutral to Offense is a twopoint
takedown. If you go from neutral to defense, you were taken down.
2. ESCAPE - E1 - 1 point – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from
underneath the opponent’s control and gets into the neutral position AND is facing the
opponent. Defense to Neutral is a one point escape.
3. REVERSAL - R2 - 2 points – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from
underneath the opponent’s control and gets on top of and/or behind the opponent in one
move AND becomes the offensive wrestler. To earn a reversal, you do not have to
return your opponent to the mat as you would on a takedown. Defense to Offense is a
two point reversal.
4. NEAR FALL 2 - N2 - 2 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler turns the
defensive wrestler over onto their back and holds them at a 45 degree angle or less for
between 2-4 seconds (2-4 counts by the referee). Also awarded when the match is
stopped due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the
match (unethical unless they are really injured) while being turned toward their back
(imminent near fall) before the near fall count starts or before 2 counts by the referee.
Only one set of near fall points can be awarded for each pinning hold, and they cannot
be awarded until after the pinning situation has ended. Defense on their Back.
5 NEAR FALL 3 - N3 - 3 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler holds the
defensive wrestler within near fall criteria for five or more seconds in a row (5 counts by
the referee), instead of the two point near fall. Also awarded when the match is stopped
due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match
(unethical unless they are really injured) after being held within two point near fall
criteria (2-4 count by the referee), instead of the 2 point near fall. Defense on their Back
Longer.
6. NEAR FALL 4 - N4 - 4 points – Awarded when the match is stopped due to the
defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match (unethical
unless they are really injured) after being held within near fall criteria for five or more
seconds, instead of the 3 point near fall. Defense on their Back Longer and Injured.
7. PENALTY POINTS - P1 or P2 - 1 or 2 points - A wrestler in any of the three scoring
positions can earn one or two penalty points when their opponent breaks the rules of
wrestling. These rules include no stalling (one stall warning “S” is given before
penalizing for stalling), no swearing, kicking, scratching, biting, hitting, body slamming
an opponent to the mat, bending any body part beyond its normal range of motion (the
referee will try to stop these situations as “potentially dangerous” before someone is
injured), or using holds from the illegal holds’ list. On the penalty chart, any first penalty
is 1 point. Any second penalty is 1 point. Any third penalty is 2 points. Any fourth
penalty is disqualification. Unsportsmanlike conduct and flagrant misconduct can lead
to immediate disqualification.
7-1. LOCKED HANDS PENALTY - A wrestler in the neutral position or defensive
position can lock hands around the torso or both legs of the opponent. But it is a
penalty for the offensive wrestler to lock hands (except cradles) around the torso or both
legs of the defensive wrestler unless the opponent is standing on their feet or within a
near fall count. Overlapping fingers is considered locked hands by the referee.
7-2. LOCKED HANDS AROUND THE HEAD PENALTY - It is a penalty from any of the
three scoring positions to lock hands around the opponent’s head without an arm or leg
included. You must also allow your opponent to breathe in a headlock or the referee
can stop it as potentially dangerous.
8. CAUTION and CAUTION POINT - C and C1 - 0 and 1 point - A wrestler in any of
the three scoring positions can earn one caution point from the opponent’s third caution
on for each time the opponent is cautioned by the referee for starting too quick before
the whistle OR by lining up incorrectly when starting from referee’s position or from on
the feet. A wrestler is allowed two cautions before the C1 penalty points begin. Also
caution points are separate from penalty points and do not count on the penalty chart
towards disqualification. Scored C, C, C1, C1, C1, etc.
TEAM POINTS - DUAL MEET SCORING
1. PIN FALL - 6 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler holds both of the
opponent’s scapulas to the mat for two consecutive seconds in high school. The match
is over as soon as the fall occurs, and the one who is pinned loses automatically even
though they may have been way ahead in match points at the time. The referee slaps
the mat when a fall occurs. You can pin or be pinned in any of the three scoring
positions.
2. TECHNICAL FALL - 5 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler has
scored 15 match points more than the opponent. The match is stopped as soon as the
15 point margin is achieved, except in a pinning situation where the referee will allow
the offensive wrestler to try to score the fall.
3. MAJOR DECISION - 4 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins by a
margin of 8-14 match points more than the opponent has scored.
4. REGULAR DECISION - 3 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins
by a margin of 1-7 match points more than the opponent has scored.
5. DRAW OR TIE - There are no more ties in wrestling as the match will be decided by
sudden victory overtime from the feet and/or by tie breakers from referee’s position.
6. DISQUALIFICATION - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by disqualification
when the opponent is disqualified from the match because of too many penalties
OR when a wrestler is illegally injured by an opponent’s illegal hold and cannot continue
wrestling. If you were injured by an opponent’s illegal hold (not a technical violation like
locking hands or grabbing the uniform, unless it was their fourth penalty chart penalty),
you will win the match by disqualification. It will not do a wrestler any good to
intentionally try to injure an opponent because they will lose.
7. INJURY DEFAULT – 6 team points – A wrestler wins a match by injury default when
the opponent is injured accidentally during the match and cannot continue wrestling.
8. FORFEIT - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by forfeit when the other team
does not have a wrestler to compete against them.
TEAM POINTS - TOURNAMENT SCORING - High School
1. ADVANCEMENT POINTS - High School - 2 or (1) team points for each win on the
championship side of the bracket and 1 or (1/2) team point for each win on the
consolation side of the bracket. You do not receive advancement points for a bye unless
you win your next match after the bye, unless your specific tournament allows it. Also,
you do not receive advancement points for winning your 1st, 3rd, 5th, or 7th place
matches.
2. EXTRA MARGIN OF VICTORY POINTS
- 1 or (1) extra team point for each major decision (8-14 match point victory margin).
- 1.5 or (1.5 with a near fall) extra team points for each technical fall (15 or more
match point victory margin).
- 2 or (2) extra team points for each fall, default, disqualification, forfeit.
3. PLACING POINTS
- 1st place = 16 team points
- 2nd place = 12 team points
- 3rd place = 9 team points
- 4th place = 7 team points
- 5th place = 5 team points
- 6th place = 3 team points
- 7th place = 2 team points
- 8th place = 1 team point
4. Advancement points and extra margin of victory points are always added into the
tournament team score after each match is completed. However, placement points are
not added in, until after a win in a round guarantees a certain placing even if the
wrestler loses all subsequent matches. For example: If you win a quarterfinal match in
any tournament and get into the semifinals, you are guaranteed at least 6th place, even
if you lost all of your later matches, and thus the 3 or (6) placement points for 6th place
would be added to your team score at that time. If you win your semifinal match and get
into the finals, you are guaranteed at least 2nd place, thus you would earn 9 or (6) more
placement team points by moving from the 3 or (6) - 6th place points to the 12 - 2nd
place points. A finals win would move you from the 12 - 2nd place points to the 16 - 1st
place points, and thus you would get 4 more placement team points added in after the
How would you explain folkstyle wrestling rules to potential fans, parents, beginning
wrestlers, or the media so they would easily understand? I believe all of us know many
people who have become serious wrestling fans after they learned about our sport.
That old adage “The More You Know, The More You Will Enjoy!” certainly applies here.
If our sport is to continue to grow in popularity nationwide, we must do a better job of
explaining it. This article is written from a referee’s point of view and will help people
understand faster. The following definitions are compiled from many coaches and
referees in our sport, and they are rule and rule interpretation correct.
Please feel free to copy and paste any part of this article into your wrestling meet and
tournament programs to help explain to fans what is happening. You might consider
making a stack of four page packets stapled front to back available at home wrestling
meets on a table next to your home wrestling programs. Make copies and give them to
your fans, parents, youth and high school wrestlers, stat managers, cheerleaders, table
workers, youth tournament referees, and your local media to better explain our sport.
This article will fit on four pages if you do not use this first part. Many coaches don’t
teach these rules and interpretations to their wrestlers like they should. How many of
you coaches take the time to cover one rule interpretation in each practice? This article
will hopefully make it all easier.
FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING - A combative sport where one wrestler tries to physically
control the opponent against their will without injuring them.
PHYSICAL CONTROL - To get behind the opponent’s back and arms, force them down
to the mat, turn them over onto their back, and pin them. To take the opponent directly
from their feet to their back without getting behind them, and pin them. To counter the
opponent’s moves to stay in the control position.
MATCH OR BOUT - When two wrestlers wrestle each other. Both wrestlers must
weigh within one weight class of each other. You win a match by pinning your
opponent, by scoring more match points than your opponent, or by disqualification if
your opponent breaks certain rules.
A MATCH in high school consists of three two-minute periods. The first period begins
in neutral position with both wrestlers on their feet and facing each other. The second
period begins with one wrestler choosing top, bottom, neutral, or deferring choice until
the third period. The third period begins with the other wrestler choosing top, bottom, or
neutral position.
POSITIONS - Most sports have two scoring positions - offense and defense.
1. Wrestling has three scoring positions - offense, defense, and neutral.
2. You can only be in one of these positions at a time.
3. You can only score in certain ways from each position.
4. Scoring match points is just improving from defense to neutral to offense to
a pinning position, in that order.
5. When one wrestler is in the neutral position, the opponent must also be in
the neutral position.
6. When one wrestler is in the offensive position, the opponent must be in the
defensive position.
OFFENSIVE POSITION - ON TOP - IN CONTROL - THE BEST POSITION - The
wrestler who is on top of and/or behind the opponent and is physically controlling them.
Also, the wrestler on top in the referee’s starting position. The offensive wrestler will try
to physically break down the opponent and turn the opponent’s back toward the mat (45
degree angle or less) to score near fall points or to gain a fall. Only the offensive
wrestler can score a 2, 3, or 4 point near fall.
NEUTRAL POSITION - ON THE FEET - NO CONTROL - THE NEXT BEST POSITION
- When neither wrestler has control over the other and they are both on their feet or
knees and facing each other. Each neutral wrestler will try to "break balance" on the
other and take them down to the mat. Only the neutral wrestler can score a 2 point
takedown.
DEFENSIVE POSITION - ON THE BOTTOM - BEING CONTROLLED - THE WORST
POSITION – The wrestler who is underneath and is being physically controlled. Also
the wrestler on the bottom in the referee’s starting position. The defensive wrestler will
try to get out of the top wrestler’s control by escaping from or reversing the
offensive wrestler. Only the defensive wrestler can score a 1 point escape or a 2 point
reversal. Strategy-wise, most wrestlers will choose "down" when it's their choice of
position because they feel it is easier to score an escape or reversal from this "worst
position", than a takedown from neutral or a near fall from on top.
MATCH STOPPED - If the wrestlers have their match stopped by the referee’s whistle,
the referee will return them to the center of the mat and start them wrestling again in the
same neutral, top, or bottom position that they were in when the match was stopped.
For example: out-of-bounds, stalemate, potentially dangerous, penalty, injury, coach's
conference, or no action on the edge of the mat.
STALEMATE - The referee can stop the match when both wrestlers are in a situation
where neither wrestler can improve their position.
POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS - The referee can stop the match in situations where
one wrestler might become injured by a legal or illegal hold before the injury occurs.
Safety is considered more important than scoring and the match can continue.
REFEREE'S POSITION - A starting position in the center of the mat where the
defensive wrestler puts their knees down on one side of one parallel line and hands
down on the other side of the other parallel line. Once set, they must remain still until
the referee blows the start whistle, or they can be cautioned for moving too soon.
- After the defensive wrestler acknowledges to the referee that they are set, the
referee will signal the offensive wrestler to assume their choice of either the traditional
top starting position or the freestyle top starting position.
- In the traditional top starting position, the offensive wrestler will place at least
one knee down on the mat on the same side as they are going to touch the elbow, place
one hand naval deep around the waist, place their head over the center line of the
defensive wrestler's back, and LASTLY, touch the back of one elbow with the palm of
the other hand, and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.
- In the freestyle top starting position, the offensive wrestler will signal to the
referee by raising both hands toward the referee with the thumbs touching and then the
referee will verbally notify the bottom wrestler that the top wrestler is going to use a
freestyle start. The offensive wrestler will stay standing to the side or the back of the
defensive wrestler and place both hands with thumbs still touching on the midline of the
back of the defensive wrestler and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.
- To insure a fair start, either the top or bottom wrestler can be cautioned for
each time they assume an incorrect starting position OR they move too soon before the
referee blows the start whistle.
- The above details are very technical, but when followed correctly, referee's
position starts go very smoothly and quickly.
MATCH POINTS – Points scored during a match. There are eight basic ways to score
match points in high school.
1. TAKEDOWN - T2 - 2 points - Awarded after one of the neutral wrestlers gets behind
the opponent and forces them down to the mat to their stomach or side or knees or
weight on all fours OR takes them directly to their back or buttocks without getting
behind them AND becomes the offensive wrestler. Neutral to Offense is a twopoint
takedown. If you go from neutral to defense, you were taken down.
2. ESCAPE - E1 - 1 point – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from
underneath the opponent’s control and gets into the neutral position AND is facing the
opponent. Defense to Neutral is a one point escape.
3. REVERSAL - R2 - 2 points – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from
underneath the opponent’s control and gets on top of and/or behind the opponent in one
move AND becomes the offensive wrestler. To earn a reversal, you do not have to
return your opponent to the mat as you would on a takedown. Defense to Offense is a
two point reversal.
4. NEAR FALL 2 - N2 - 2 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler turns the
defensive wrestler over onto their back and holds them at a 45 degree angle or less for
between 2-4 seconds (2-4 counts by the referee). Also awarded when the match is
stopped due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the
match (unethical unless they are really injured) while being turned toward their back
(imminent near fall) before the near fall count starts or before 2 counts by the referee.
Only one set of near fall points can be awarded for each pinning hold, and they cannot
be awarded until after the pinning situation has ended. Defense on their Back.
5 NEAR FALL 3 - N3 - 3 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler holds the
defensive wrestler within near fall criteria for five or more seconds in a row (5 counts by
the referee), instead of the two point near fall. Also awarded when the match is stopped
due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match
(unethical unless they are really injured) after being held within two point near fall
criteria (2-4 count by the referee), instead of the 2 point near fall. Defense on their Back
Longer.
6. NEAR FALL 4 - N4 - 4 points – Awarded when the match is stopped due to the
defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match (unethical
unless they are really injured) after being held within near fall criteria for five or more
seconds, instead of the 3 point near fall. Defense on their Back Longer and Injured.
7. PENALTY POINTS - P1 or P2 - 1 or 2 points - A wrestler in any of the three scoring
positions can earn one or two penalty points when their opponent breaks the rules of
wrestling. These rules include no stalling (one stall warning “S” is given before
penalizing for stalling), no swearing, kicking, scratching, biting, hitting, body slamming
an opponent to the mat, bending any body part beyond its normal range of motion (the
referee will try to stop these situations as “potentially dangerous” before someone is
injured), or using holds from the illegal holds’ list. On the penalty chart, any first penalty
is 1 point. Any second penalty is 1 point. Any third penalty is 2 points. Any fourth
penalty is disqualification. Unsportsmanlike conduct and flagrant misconduct can lead
to immediate disqualification.
7-1. LOCKED HANDS PENALTY - A wrestler in the neutral position or defensive
position can lock hands around the torso or both legs of the opponent. But it is a
penalty for the offensive wrestler to lock hands (except cradles) around the torso or both
legs of the defensive wrestler unless the opponent is standing on their feet or within a
near fall count. Overlapping fingers is considered locked hands by the referee.
7-2. LOCKED HANDS AROUND THE HEAD PENALTY - It is a penalty from any of the
three scoring positions to lock hands around the opponent’s head without an arm or leg
included. You must also allow your opponent to breathe in a headlock or the referee
can stop it as potentially dangerous.
8. CAUTION and CAUTION POINT - C and C1 - 0 and 1 point - A wrestler in any of
the three scoring positions can earn one caution point from the opponent’s third caution
on for each time the opponent is cautioned by the referee for starting too quick before
the whistle OR by lining up incorrectly when starting from referee’s position or from on
the feet. A wrestler is allowed two cautions before the C1 penalty points begin. Also
caution points are separate from penalty points and do not count on the penalty chart
towards disqualification. Scored C, C, C1, C1, C1, etc.
TEAM POINTS - DUAL MEET SCORING
1. PIN FALL - 6 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler holds both of the
opponent’s scapulas to the mat for two consecutive seconds in high school. The match
is over as soon as the fall occurs, and the one who is pinned loses automatically even
though they may have been way ahead in match points at the time. The referee slaps
the mat when a fall occurs. You can pin or be pinned in any of the three scoring
positions.
2. TECHNICAL FALL - 5 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler has
scored 15 match points more than the opponent. The match is stopped as soon as the
15 point margin is achieved, except in a pinning situation where the referee will allow
the offensive wrestler to try to score the fall.
3. MAJOR DECISION - 4 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins by a
margin of 8-14 match points more than the opponent has scored.
4. REGULAR DECISION - 3 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins
by a margin of 1-7 match points more than the opponent has scored.
5. DRAW OR TIE - There are no more ties in wrestling as the match will be decided by
sudden victory overtime from the feet and/or by tie breakers from referee’s position.
6. DISQUALIFICATION - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by disqualification
when the opponent is disqualified from the match because of too many penalties
OR when a wrestler is illegally injured by an opponent’s illegal hold and cannot continue
wrestling. If you were injured by an opponent’s illegal hold (not a technical violation like
locking hands or grabbing the uniform, unless it was their fourth penalty chart penalty),
you will win the match by disqualification. It will not do a wrestler any good to
intentionally try to injure an opponent because they will lose.
7. INJURY DEFAULT – 6 team points – A wrestler wins a match by injury default when
the opponent is injured accidentally during the match and cannot continue wrestling.
8. FORFEIT - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by forfeit when the other team
does not have a wrestler to compete against them.
TEAM POINTS - TOURNAMENT SCORING - High School
1. ADVANCEMENT POINTS - High School - 2 or (1) team points for each win on the
championship side of the bracket and 1 or (1/2) team point for each win on the
consolation side of the bracket. You do not receive advancement points for a bye unless
you win your next match after the bye, unless your specific tournament allows it. Also,
you do not receive advancement points for winning your 1st, 3rd, 5th, or 7th place
matches.
2. EXTRA MARGIN OF VICTORY POINTS
- 1 or (1) extra team point for each major decision (8-14 match point victory margin).
- 1.5 or (1.5 with a near fall) extra team points for each technical fall (15 or more
match point victory margin).
- 2 or (2) extra team points for each fall, default, disqualification, forfeit.
3. PLACING POINTS
- 1st place = 16 team points
- 2nd place = 12 team points
- 3rd place = 9 team points
- 4th place = 7 team points
- 5th place = 5 team points
- 6th place = 3 team points
- 7th place = 2 team points
- 8th place = 1 team point
4. Advancement points and extra margin of victory points are always added into the
tournament team score after each match is completed. However, placement points are
not added in, until after a win in a round guarantees a certain placing even if the
wrestler loses all subsequent matches. For example: If you win a quarterfinal match in
any tournament and get into the semifinals, you are guaranteed at least 6th place, even
if you lost all of your later matches, and thus the 3 or (6) placement points for 6th place
would be added to your team score at that time. If you win your semifinal match and get
into the finals, you are guaranteed at least 2nd place, thus you would earn 9 or (6) more
placement team points by moving from the 3 or (6) - 6th place points to the 12 - 2n
FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING RULES EXPLAINED
By Phil Henning and The Predicament Wrestling Score Book
d

FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING RULES EXPLAINED

By Phil Henning and The Predicament Wrestling Score Book



How would you explain folkstyle wrestling rules to potential fans, parents, beginning

wrestlers, or the media so they would easily understand? I believe all of us know many

people who have become serious wrestling fans after they learned about our sport.

That old adage “The More You Know, The More You Will Enjoy!” certainly applies here.

If our sport is to continue to grow in popularity nationwide, we must do a better job of

explaining it. This article is written from a referee’s point of view and will help people

understand faster. The following definitions are compiled from many coaches and

referees in our sport, and they are rule and rule interpretation correct.

Please feel free to copy and paste any part of this article into your wrestling meet and

tournament programs to help explain to fans what is happening. You might consider

making a stack of four page packets stapled front to back available at home wrestling

meets on a table next to your home wrestling programs. Make copies and give them to

your fans, parents, youth and high school wrestlers, stat managers, cheerleaders, table

workers, youth tournament referees, and your local media to better explain our sport.

This article will fit on four pages if you do not use this first part. Many coaches don’t

teach these rules and interpretations to their wrestlers like they should. How many of

you coaches take the time to cover one rule interpretation in each practice? This article

will hopefully make it all easier.

FOLKSTYLE WRESTLING - A combative sport where one wrestler tries to physically

control the opponent against their will without injuring them.

PHYSICAL CONTROL - To get behind the opponent’s back and arms, force them down

to the mat, turn them over onto their back, and pin them. To take the opponent directly

from their feet to their back without getting behind them, and pin them. To counter the

opponent’s moves to stay in the control position.

MATCH OR BOUT - When two wrestlers wrestle each other. Both wrestlers must

weigh within one weight class of each other. You win a match by pinning your

opponent, by scoring more match points than your opponent, or by disqualification if

your opponent breaks certain rules.

A MATCH in high school consists of three two-minute periods. The first period begins

in neutral position with both wrestlers on their feet and facing each other. The second

period begins with one wrestler choosing top, bottom, neutral, or deferring choice until

the third period. The third period begins with the other wrestler choosing top, bottom, or

neutral position.

POSITIONS - Most sports have two scoring positions - offense and defense.

1. Wrestling has three scoring positions - offense, defense, and neutral.

2. You can only be in one of these positions at a time.

3. You can only score in certain ways from each position.

4. Scoring match points is just improving from defense to neutral to offense to

a pinning position, in that order.

5. When one wrestler is in the neutral position, the opponent must also be in

the neutral position.

6. When one wrestler is in the offensive position, the opponent must be in the

defensive position.

OFFENSIVE POSITION - ON TOP - IN CONTROL - THE BEST POSITION - The

wrestler who is on top of and/or behind the opponent and is physically controlling them.

Also, the wrestler on top in the referee’s starting position. The offensive wrestler will try

to physically break down the opponent and turn the opponent’s back toward the mat (45

degree angle or less) to score near fall points or to gain a fall. Only the offensive

wrestler can score a 2, 3, or 4 point near fall.

NEUTRAL POSITION - ON THE FEET - NO CONTROL - THE NEXT BEST POSITION

- When neither wrestler has control over the other and they are both on their feet or

knees and facing each other. Each neutral wrestler will try to "break balance" on the

other and take them down to the mat. Only the neutral wrestler can score a 2 point

takedown.

DEFENSIVE POSITION - ON THE BOTTOM - BEING CONTROLLED - THE WORST

POSITION – The wrestler who is underneath and is being physically controlled. Also

the wrestler on the bottom in the referee’s starting position. The defensive wrestler will

try to get out of the top wrestler’s control by escaping from or reversing the

offensive wrestler. Only the defensive wrestler can score a 1 point escape or a 2 point

reversal. Strategy-wise, most wrestlers will choose "down" when it's their choice of

position because they feel it is easier to score an escape or reversal from this "worst

position", than a takedown from neutral or a near fall from on top.

MATCH STOPPED - If the wrestlers have their match stopped by the referee’s whistle,

the referee will return them to the center of the mat and start them wrestling again in the

same neutral, top, or bottom position that they were in when the match was stopped.

For example: out-of-bounds, stalemate, potentially dangerous, penalty, injury, coach's

conference, or no action on the edge of the mat.

STALEMATE - The referee can stop the match when both wrestlers are in a situation

where neither wrestler can improve their position.

POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS - The referee can stop the match in situations where

one wrestler might become injured by a legal or illegal hold before the injury occurs.

Safety is considered more important than scoring and the match can continue.

REFEREE'S POSITION - A starting position in the center of the mat where the

defensive wrestler puts their knees down on one side of one parallel line and hands

down on the other side of the other parallel line. Once set, they must remain still until

the referee blows the start whistle, or they can be cautioned for moving too soon.

- After the defensive wrestler acknowledges to the referee that they are set, the

referee will signal the offensive wrestler to assume their choice of either the traditional

top starting position or the freestyle top starting position.

- In the traditional top starting position, the offensive wrestler will place at least

one knee down on the mat on the same side as they are going to touch the elbow, place

one hand naval deep around the waist, place their head over the center line of the

defensive wrestler's back, and LASTLY, touch the back of one elbow with the palm of

the other hand, and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.

- In the freestyle top starting position, the offensive wrestler will signal to the

referee by raising both hands toward the referee with the thumbs touching and then the

referee will verbally notify the bottom wrestler that the top wrestler is going to use a

freestyle start. The offensive wrestler will stay standing to the side or the back of the

defensive wrestler and place both hands with thumbs still touching on the midline of the

back of the defensive wrestler and wait for the referee to blow the start whistle.

- To insure a fair start, either the top or bottom wrestler can be cautioned for

each time they assume an incorrect starting position OR they move too soon before the

referee blows the start whistle.

- The above details are very technical, but when followed correctly, referee's

position starts go very smoothly and quickly.

MATCH POINTS – Points scored during a match. There are eight basic ways to score

match points in high school.

1. TAKEDOWN - T2 - 2 points - Awarded after one of the neutral wrestlers gets behind

the opponent and forces them down to the mat to their stomach or side or knees or

weight on all fours OR takes them directly to their back or buttocks without getting

behind them AND becomes the offensive wrestler. Neutral to Offense is a twopoint

takedown. If you go from neutral to defense, you were taken down.

2. ESCAPE - E1 - 1 point – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from

underneath the opponent’s control and gets into the neutral position AND is facing the

opponent. Defense to Neutral is a one point escape.

3. REVERSAL - R2 - 2 points – Awarded after the defensive wrestler gets out from

underneath the opponent’s control and gets on top of and/or behind the opponent in one

move AND becomes the offensive wrestler. To earn a reversal, you do not have to

return your opponent to the mat as you would on a takedown. Defense to Offense is a

two point reversal.

4. NEAR FALL 2 - N2 - 2 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler turns the

defensive wrestler over onto their back and holds them at a 45 degree angle or less for

between 2-4 seconds (2-4 counts by the referee). Also awarded when the match is

stopped due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the

match (unethical unless they are really injured) while being turned toward their back

(imminent near fall) before the near fall count starts or before 2 counts by the referee.

Only one set of near fall points can be awarded for each pinning hold, and they cannot

be awarded until after the pinning situation has ended. Defense on their Back.

5 NEAR FALL 3 - N3 - 3 points – Awarded after the offensive wrestler holds the

defensive wrestler within near fall criteria for five or more seconds in a row (5 counts by

the referee), instead of the two point near fall. Also awarded when the match is stopped

due to the defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match

(unethical unless they are really injured) after being held within two point near fall

criteria (2-4 count by the referee), instead of the 2 point near fall. Defense on their Back

Longer.

6. NEAR FALL 4 - N4 - 4 points – Awarded when the match is stopped due to the

defensive wrestler being injured and/or screaming out to stop the match (unethical

unless they are really injured) after being held within near fall criteria for five or more

seconds, instead of the 3 point near fall. Defense on their Back Longer and Injured.

7. PENALTY POINTS - P1 or P2 - 1 or 2 points - A wrestler in any of the three scoring

positions can earn one or two penalty points when their opponent breaks the rules of

wrestling. These rules include no stalling (one stall warning “S” is given before

penalizing for stalling), no swearing, kicking, scratching, biting, hitting, body slamming

an opponent to the mat, bending any body part beyond its normal range of motion (the

referee will try to stop these situations as “potentially dangerous” before someone is

injured), or using holds from the illegal holds’ list. On the penalty chart, any first penalty

is 1 point. Any second penalty is 1 point. Any third penalty is 2 points. Any fourth

penalty is disqualification. Unsportsmanlike conduct and flagrant misconduct can lead

to immediate disqualification.

7-1. LOCKED HANDS PENALTY - A wrestler in the neutral position or defensive

position can lock hands around the torso or both legs of the opponent. But it is a

penalty for the offensive wrestler to lock hands (except cradles) around the torso or both

legs of the defensive wrestler unless the opponent is standing on their feet or within a

near fall count. Overlapping fingers is considered locked hands by the referee.

7-2. LOCKED HANDS AROUND THE HEAD PENALTY - It is a penalty from any of the

three scoring positions to lock hands around the opponent’s head without an arm or leg

included. You must also allow your opponent to breathe in a headlock or the referee

can stop it as potentially dangerous.

8. CAUTION and CAUTION POINT - C and C1 - 0 and 1 point - A wrestler in any of

the three scoring positions can earn one caution point from the opponent’s third caution

on for each time the opponent is cautioned by the referee for starting too quick before

the whistle OR by lining up incorrectly when starting from referee’s position or from on

the feet. A wrestler is allowed two cautions before the C1 penalty points begin. Also

caution points are separate from penalty points and do not count on the penalty chart

towards disqualification. Scored C, C, C1, C1, C1, etc.

TEAM POINTS - DUAL MEET SCORING

1. PIN FALL - 6 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler holds both of the

opponent’s scapulas to the mat for two consecutive seconds in high school. The match

is over as soon as the fall occurs, and the one who is pinned loses automatically even

though they may have been way ahead in match points at the time. The referee slaps

the mat when a fall occurs. You can pin or be pinned in any of the three scoring

positions.

2. TECHNICAL FALL - 5 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler has

scored 15 match points more than the opponent. The match is stopped as soon as the

15 point margin is achieved, except in a pinning situation where the referee will allow

the offensive wrestler to try to score the fall.

3. MAJOR DECISION - 4 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins by a

margin of 8-14 match points more than the opponent has scored.

4. REGULAR DECISION - 3 team points - Awarded to the team whose wrestler wins

by a margin of 1-7 match points more than the opponent has scored.

5. DRAW OR TIE - There are no more ties in wrestling as the match will be decided by

sudden victory overtime from the feet and/or by tie breakers from referee’s position.

6. DISQUALIFICATION - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by disqualification

when the opponent is disqualified from the match because of too many penalties

OR when a wrestler is illegally injured by an opponent’s illegal hold and cannot continue

wrestling. If you were injured by an opponent’s illegal hold (not a technical violation like

locking hands or grabbing the uniform, unless it was their fourth penalty chart penalty),

you will win the match by disqualification. It will not do a wrestler any good to

intentionally try to injure an opponent because they will lose.

7. INJURY DEFAULT – 6 team points – A wrestler wins a match by injury default when

the opponent is injured accidentally during the match and cannot continue wrestling.

8. FORFEIT - 6 team points - A wrestler wins a match by forfeit when the other team

does not have a wrestler to compete against them.

TEAM POINTS - TOURNAMENT SCORING - High School

1. ADVANCEMENT POINTS - High School - 2 or (1) team points for each win on the

championship side of the bracket and 1 or (1/2) team point for each win on the

consolation side of the bracket. You do not receive advancement points for a bye unless

you win your next match after the bye, unless your specific tournament allows it. Also,

you do not receive advancement points for winning your 1st, 3rd, 5th, or 7th place

matches.

2. EXTRA MARGIN OF VICTORY POINTS

- 1 or (1) extra team point for each major decision (8-14 match point victory margin).

- 1.5 or (1.5 with a near fall) extra team points for each technical fall (15 or more

match point victory margin).

- 2 or (2) extra team points for each fall, default, disqualification, forfeit.

3. PLACING POINTS

- 1st place = 16 team points

- 2nd place = 12 team points

- 3rd place = 9 team points

- 4th place = 7 team points

- 5th place = 5 team points

- 6th place = 3 team points

- 7th place = 2 team points

- 8th place = 1 team point

4. Advancement points and extra margin of victory points are always added into the

tournament team score after each match is completed. However, placement points are

not added in, until after a win in a round guarantees a certain placing even if the

wrestler loses all subsequent matches. For example: If you win a quarterfinal match in

any tournament and get into the semifinals, you are guaranteed at least 6th place, even

if you lost all of your later matches, and thus the 3 or (6) placement points for 6th place

would be added to your team score at that time. If you win your semifinal match and get

into the finals, you are guaranteed at least 2nd place, thus you would earn 9 or (6) more

placement team points by moving from the 3 or (6) - 6th place points to the 12 - 2nd

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